Joins on a season loan deal from AS Vita
Zebras striker Onkabetse Makgantai has returned to Orapa United on a season long loan deal. Makgantai has been one of the few Batswana plying their trade beyond the country’s borders, a move that came after his impressive exploits in the 2015/16 season where he helped United win the Mascom Top 8.
He was also an inspirational figure that saw the Zebras finish as runners up at the 2016 Castle COSAFA Castle Cup hosted in Namibia. Though none of the two sides came out to reveal the transfer fee, Gazette Sport, last year, reported that the Ostriches had cashed in a fee of over P500 000, with the player’s monthly wages sitting at a reported US$ 5500 (Over P55 000 a month). However as proven previously with the likes of Jerome Ramatlhakwane, Phenyo Mongala and Dirang Moloi that life in the DRC can be a challenge for local players, the former Nico United man has also left the DRC.
Just after less than a year in the war stricken country, the Botswana international is headed back to the BTC Premiership, this publication can reveal. Despite keen interest from defending league champions Township Rollers, who have been admirers of the 22 year old since his days with Nico United, his former side Orapa United have won the race to get his signature. He was in action for the mining side over the weekend in the Bank Gaborone Dlala Pre Season Cup in Maun.
He further capped his return to the club with a goal in the losers final against BDF XI. A source close to last season’s Mascom Top 8 runners up told Gazette Sport that a one year loan deal has been agreed. “He has agreed a one year loan deal with them, he has been in Orapa for two weeks now, and has been training with the team. Though I am not aware of other terms of his loan move, the deal was agreed last week Thursday,” said a source.
The source also added that, “They have been monitoring his situation, and were quite aware that he (Makgantai) wasn’t seeing enough game time, and it was something they were more than happy to offer, because he was now getting frustrated of sitting on the bench,” ended the informer. When contacted for an official comment on the subject, the club’s Public Relations Officer Kabo William’s was not reachable.
The arrival of Makgantai will no doubt be a massive boost for coach Madinda Ndlovu’s league title promise, which he announced during the club’s end of season awards. Despite a frustrating transfer window, where they failed to land some of their main target such as Gaborone United’s Tumisang Orebonye and Thato Kebue, United have boosted their squad with former Township Rollers duo of Bogosing Kaekwa and Kobamelo Kebaikanye as well as Zimbabwean midfielder Tapiwa Nyamanjiva.